The Ebony Horse Club in south London has been chosen as the official charity for Olympia horse show this Christmas (12-23 December).
The club was set up in the heart of Brixton in 1996 by Ros Spearing who wanted to give disadvantaged children the chance to ride – and to change their lives for the better.
“We offer much more than riding lessons,” said Ros, who recently received an MBE for her services to young people. “We mentor children who experience significant challenges at school and at home, which can profoundly affect their ability to achieve in life.”
After years of transporting club members around London to riding schools Ros managed to raise funds to build her own equestrian centre, with the help of an FEI Development Award in 2010. Since the centre was opened in 2011 by the Duchess of Cornwall, it has developed a riding programme for 120 local children and young people a week.
However, funds are still needed to help with the high costs of running and maintaining the club. Which is where the London International Horse Show will help out.
Ebony will take a percentage of ticket sales from the afternoon performance on Wednesday 19 December as well as receiving all the proceeds from the Shop and Drop stall, which will be run by the club.
This stall is a place where visitors to Olympia can leave their bags after they’ve spent their pre-Christmas money on yet another rug for their horse. It will also be a publicity stand for Ebony, providing them with an opportunity to raise money throughout the five days of the show.
Around 70 volunteers are need to help run the stand, so if you'd like to donate a few hours of your time visit Ebony's website, or call 020 7738 3478.